go to content go to search box go to global site navigation

Introducing Kuta

Imagine a crescent bay, turquoise in the shallows and deep blue further out. It licks a huge, white-sand beach, as wide as a football pitch and framed by headlands. It's deserted, save for a few fishermen, seaweed farmers and their children. Now imagine a coastline of nearly a dozen such bays, all backed by a rugged range of coastal hills spotted with lush patches of banana trees and tobacco fields, and you'll have a notion of Kuta's immediate appeal.

Kuta proper consists of no more than a few hundred houses, a likeable but scruffy-around-the-edges place with a ramshackle market area, and a seafront lined with a non-contigious row of distinctly modest cafes and hotels.

Kuta's original attraction was the limitless world-class breaks within a short ride of town. For now everyone seems to be sitting on their land, but the town's real-estate agents – who are already spearheading increasing villa development – are betting on change real soon. The big boom hasn't happened yet, but you can feel the tension.

Note that the main intersection in town, Jl Pantai Kuta and Jl ke Mawan, is commonly called 'the junction' and is a main point of reference for directions. Some 2km north of the beach on Jl Pantai Kuta is another important junction, where there is a big traffic circle with the optimistically planned four lanes of Jl Raya Bypass.